Singer joins food bank in Ilford on New Year’s Eve to help families in need

A rising singer visited a food bank in Ilford on New Year’s Eve to help pack food parcels and give them out to families in crisis.

Saif Adam, 28, writes songs based on Islam. He said working at the Redbridge Food Bank was “an eye-opener”.

He added: “I have done quite a lot of work for charities abroad and finding that kind of deprivation on your doorstep is surprising.”

The food bank, in Granville Road, is part of a national network of banks giving out emergency food to people struggling to make ends meet.

The organisation also offers support to help people out of poverty by putting them in touch with other agencies.

Project manager Jocelyn Davis said the food bank has had to go from opening two days a week to five to cope with demand.

She added: “We used to feed about 100 people but now it must be much more.

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“People need help for such a wide range of reasons.

“Some are coming in because of changes to the benefit system, some are referred to us by social services, people who escaping domestic violence and redundancy.

“A lot of people hit are in their 50s and can’t get back on the work ladder.

“Men come in here broken because they have lost their job and have to rely on a food bank.”